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Illegal Rice Imports
Economy, Domestic Economy

Illegal Rice Imports

Contraband rice accounts for 30-35 percent of Iran’s total annual consumption of the crop, according to the secretary of Iran Rice Importers Association, as reported by Eghtesad-News. Masih Keshavarz referred to the “unreasonably high import tariffs” as the main reason behind excessive rice smuggling. He called on authorities to reduce import tariffs from the current 40% to 25%. The official also warned about the health risks involved in consuming contraband rice “since smuggled products do not go through required inspection procedures.” As Mehr News Agency reported, about 149,000 tons of rice, worth $153 million, were imported through legal channels during the first two months of the current Iranian year (started March 21), which indicates a 18.4-percent rise in weight and a 29.5 percent increase in value.

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